The Men of Iron Minute

by Chad Zueck | Director of Content Creation

A Towel and a Pail of Water

Just like every man, pivotal circumstances have riddled my life. One life-changing event happened nearly twenty years ago. My wife and I had been married for ten years, and we had weathered the storms of college life and military service. I thought we were doing great. We raised kids, made money, and had some nice things. In my understanding, this was the “American Dream.” We did what we thought was best, as many young couples do. Our early years of marriage brought fun, frolicking, and a few piddly disputes that were overcome with stubbornness and the grace of God. We made room for both in our home.

As an anniversary gift to ourselves, we purchased a “Weekend to Remember” through Family Life Ministries. We were newbies in this world and had high expectations for something good to happen. We learned, laughed, and cried over and over. I wasn’t made to feel like less than a man, and I was never manipulated. We were drawn in by the authenticity and example of the presenters. We could see Jesus in all of them. The moment that rocked my world came in a hard-hitting session with just husbands in the room. They showed a video of a man with money, a highly respected job as a judge, and a family surrounding him. But this man was hollow and pathetic as a husband and father. He treated everyone else like they were made to serve him. The video turns optimistic when he admits failures and commits to changing his legacy from one waiting to be served into a man who will serve. The twist unfolds in a grainy, old home video that shows a room full of tearful people giving and receiving the blessing of grace. The old judge grabbed a pail of water and a towel and proceeded to wash all his family members’ feet one by one. He spoke thoughtfully over each of them and gave an example after example of how he failed and how Jesus’ example changed him (John 13:1-17).

His example changed my life. I repented of my selfishness and vowed to live a life of service. I returned home, got my pail of water, and got to work. I exchanged my hiddenness for authenticity and selfishness for service. My heart was wrecked and made whole.


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